Department for Community Based Services

Standards of Practice Online Manual

11.31 Determining Who has Legal Right to the Child

Cabinet for Health and Family Services

Department for Community Based Services
Division of Protection and Permanency
Standards of Practice Online Manual
Chapter:
Chapter 11-CPS Court
Effective:
7/14/2018
Section:
11.31 Determining Who has Legal Right to the Child
Version:
2

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Legal Authority/Introduction

LEGAL AUTHORITY:

Procedure

The SSW:

  1. Determines who has potential legal rights to the child to ensure that:
    1. The rights of all persons having a direct, legal relationship to the child are terminated; and
    2. No possibility exists, however remote, that the birth or legal parent could invalidate the child’s adoption;
  2. Talks with the birth mother, relatives and family friends to determine who has potential legal rights to the child;
  3. Checks appropriate legal documents to determine who has potential legal rights to include:
    1. Birth certificate;
    2. Marriage license;
    3. Divorce decrees;
    4. Child support records;
    5. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) records;
    6. Kentucky Transitional Assistance Program (KTAP) records; and 
    7. DCBS case records, including the child’s file; and
    8. A search of the Putative Father Registry.
  4. Researches those persons having a legal relationship to the child to include:
    1. The mother;
    2. The legal father:
      1. Is a man who has been adjudged to be the legal father of the child or is presumed to be the father due to marriage; and
      2. The biological father  may be the same person, but this is not always the case; and
    3. An alleged or putative father, which may include more than one alleged or putative father; and
    4. Adoptive parents (mother and father) who are the legal parents of the child.

Notifying and Locating Alleged or Putative Fathers

The SSW: 

  1. Includes the alleged or putative father(s) as a party to the termination of parental rights (TPR) action in the same manner as any other party to an involuntary termination action if one (1) of the following conditions exists: 
  2. He is known and voluntarily identified by the mother by affidavit;
  3. Prior to the entry of a final order in a termination proceeding, he shall have acknowledged the child as his own by affirmatively asserting paternity in the action or to the custodial agency or the party bringing the action within sixty (60) days after the birth of the child; 
  4. he has caused his name to be affixed to the birth certificate of the child;
  5. He has commenced a judicial proceeding claiming parental right;
  6. He has contributed financially to the support of the child, either by paying the medical or hospital bills associated with the birth of the child or financially contributed to the child's support; or
  7. He has married the mother of the child or has lived openly or is living openly with the child or the person designated on the birth certificate as the biological mother of the child;
  8. He has registered with the Putative Father Registry.
  9. Contacts the putative or legal father to obtain his signature on the Disclaimer of Paternity (TWIST) form if the putative or legal father of a child does not acknowledge paternity of the child;
  10. Documents in the case record unsuccessful efforts to obtain a signature of the alleged father;
  11. Makes efforts to secure information about the identity of the father by following procedures in this section of SOP, as well as, SOP 4.3 Relative and Absent Parent Search when the identity of the father is unknown.
  12. If a search of the Putative Father Registry has not alrady occurred, will request that a search of the Putative Father Registry be completed by submitting the DPP-1305, Putative Father Registry Search Request to PutativeFather@ky.gov
 

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